Life of Mar Aba – chapter 19

The negotiations proved fruitless.  Mar Aba felt that he had the backing of the king, and the magians suspected that this might be so.  They resolved to find out.

19.  A few days later, the King of Kings saw the blessed one on the road; he spoke to him and accepted the salutation which the godly one made him.  This excited the envy of the magians and they again brought him before their assembly.  When he appeared before them, one arose as prosecutor and said, “This one used to be a pagan and the son of a pagan, and later became a Christian.” 

Then they all clapped their hands and said, “This man is deserving of death.”  Then they drew up a document of the investigation and read it to each other. 

They showed him the piece of writing, which they had drawn up against him, and said, “If you do our will, and write and sign with us, that you do not forbid those who have married their stepmother, sisters and stepdaughters, as well as those others who (have contracted marriages) forbidden by your scripture, do not come before the court, do not bring any magians and pagans into Christianity, and do not forbid the Christians to eat the flesh left over from magian sacrifices, then we will leave you free and we will not throw you into prison.  Go into your house and manage your Catholicate.  But if you do not listen to us, then we will draw up an indictment (purschaschnâmag) against you and throw you in prison.”

The Catholicos said, “God, whom I serve, forbids me to transgress the true Christian faith, which I hold and teach, and to do you will in any of the above matters.  For anyone who does something like this denies Christ and is no Christian.”

After they heard this, they sealed the indictment and ordered that he be thrown into prison.


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